Acworth's already started designing the grand dining room, inspired by the sets in Remains of the Day, including candelabras, elaborate draperies, and, of course, a long, long table. "I consider it the pinnacle of where everything comes together," he says.
The dream is still at least a year off: he'll have to figure out payment and subscription details, renovate the nearly untouched top floor, and recruit couples who want to live their kinks on camera. But he's hoping he'll soon have more time to devote to the project. With more than 100 employees and a huge building to maintain, Acworth's role has shifted from almost entirely creative to almost entirely administrative. He misses the early days, when he found models on Craigslist, tied them up in his rented Marina apartment, interacted with them himself, and then posted the shoots. (You can still see these early shoots online.) Soon he'll promote an employee to chief operating officer, which will allow him to back off the business side and devote himself to the reality show.
So did he ever imagine his little project would get so big? Absolutely not, Acworth says. If he'd had any inkling, he adds, "I would've been terrified." But it only seems natural that the little English boy who used to try to sell his parents' own vegetables back to them would eventually have an eye for business and that his interest in fetish porn would lead his business instincts here.
As for how his parents feel about his chosen profession, Acworth says they're not exactly vocally supportive, but they don't condemn him either. His mom, a sculptor, has started creating pieces that feature couples in coital or bondage positions, and may start to sell them on the site. His dad, a former Jesuit preacher, says only, "As long as no one's getting hurt and there are no animals, I guess it's all right."
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